Yangon is a city of full of diverse flavours. With a week in the city, Hidden Saigon founder, Linh found herself falling in love with the city, the people and the food. With over 135 different ethnic groups in Myanmar, each having their own distinct culture and food, the flavour profiles ranges from state to state.
Food highlights from the trip included dosa from New Delhi Restaurant, ethnic Mon food from Jana Mon and the beer braised duck from Root, a modern style restaurant focusing on traditional food from Wa State.
We had a chance to explore a bit of the contemporary art and film culture while we were there. We hit up Myanm/art, one of the leading galleries in Yangon, for the newly opened show "Kaung Su: Ashes of Time". He is one of the few artists working with Neon.
We were also very fortunate to have one of the longest running film festivals, Wathann Film Festival, on during our visit. We managed to catch the screening of 4 short films as part of their local short film competition. My favourites on the night was "Going Home" by Chit Moe Pio, which had the director returning home to document the life of his family and the hill tribes where he comes from. The other film that caught my attention was a short film by director Shin Thandar, called "Lost Boy", that follows the daily life of the boys working at a carwash located by the side of the highways.
Lastly, we managed to squeeze in a wonderful bike and food tour with Yangon Food Tours that took us to Dala island, a 10 minute ferry ride away, where we got a glimpse into local island life: a visit to the local wet market, rice paddy fields and a pagoda before heading back into the city. Unfortunately, due to some light food poisoning, Linh was unable to taste any of the delicious food that was part of the tour such as Shan noodles, samosa salads, Burmese curries and tealeaf salad. Instead, her wonderful tour guide Swan took her to the Indian area of Yangon to buy some goodies to take home, including handmade street chapatis, indian sweets, curry powder and a tupperware full of mutton samosas.
Yangon is a definite place to visit and we will be back for sure. In the meantime, you can start drooling over these food photos from the trip. I think I'll heat up those samosa now. :D